Down in the Valley: Fast track, not flame out

Heading into day six in Silicon Valley. Had my first Palo Alto start-up meeting today, stopping outside of Il Fornaio to meet a friend who’s been working on a very cool project.
No, I’m not going to tell you what it is, but you’ll be really interested when they pull the covers off, I promise. We talked about buzz and burn-out; his contention was that buzz–for a new venture–was often an express train to burn-out. “Will Friendster really benefit from all the buzz it’s getting, or will it burn out from the pressure of meeting raised expectations?” was high question, and it’s a good one for everything that ends up wielding the double-edged sword of hype. I remember, back in the day, when Rupert Murdoch hired 500 people–yes, 500–to sit in an immaculate spanking new multimedia office suite high above the clouds in midtown Manhattan and when they came to recruit me I demurred, convinced anything that would rise that fast could head down just as quickly. And sure enough, six months to the day later, most of those folks did not have jobs, and I was working away at the less jazzy company I’d gone to, which would later win all sorts of prizes (and which had Jeff Jarvis as a stealth weapon.
Moral of this story: None.
Useful wisdom: Make sure your fast track doesn’t lead to flame out